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Veteran- and Military-Friendly Employers

By Diane Hudson Burns

Many companies recognize, recruit, and use the value offered from veterans entering the corporate workforce.

Military-friendly companies value your leadership skills, diversity, commitment/discipline, training, flexibility / adaptability, and "in-the-trenches/can-do" attitude and work ethic.

A number of companies that recruit veterans also have internal veterans' programs.

For example, Booz Allen Hamilton has such a program, as they value the knowledge, experience, and credentials of veterans. They have created a program so veterans are introduced to the "corporate culture," and the non-military employees are introduced to the "military culture," joining the workforce and creating a mutual understanding and respect.


DoD Contractors

Government / Department of Defense contractors value and recruit veterans, as oftentimes, the work you performed in the military is directly aligned with the work accomplished by the contractor. You may even be able to step into the equivalent job, in the same location, you held in the military.

Additionally, many DoD contractors require their employees to hold security clearances. If you have a security clearance when you leave the military, you may want to leverage that credential, and apply for jobs with DoD contractors. If you already have a security clearance, then you are highly desired by many DoD contractors, and your hiring process may even be expedited.

Other Organizations & Industries That Recruit Military

Interest in hiring veterans is not limited to DoD contractors. Many other organizations are also very interested.

  • Security & Law Enforcement Organizations

    The military defends the homeland against threats from foreign entities. Consequently, as a service member, you are trained in security, anti-terrorism, and force protection, at a minimum. Your skills and knowledge of security may be a benefit to an employer seeking an expert in security operations and or law enforcement.

    Job-Hunt's list of Veterans' Resources by State includes links to most state police organization recruiting pages, another law enforcement option.

    However, you do not necessarily have to "walk the beat." Your skills may translate to managing a security operation for any type of company; creating security plans; developing contingency security plans for a company, or other organization.

  • The Federal Government

    The US federal government offers veterans' preference points to service members who were awarded a campaign badge or expeditionary medal (5 points); or were disabled (10 points). Many federal positions align with military occupational specialties, and seeking federal employment can make for a smooth transition from the military.

  • Intelligence & Intelligence Training Organizations

    These types of organizations seek and recruit military, as you are already well trained with hands-on experience in intelligence disciplines.

  • Communications, Utilities, and Communications-Oriented Companies

    Communications and utilities companies recruit veterans to leverage the skills gained in the military specific to communications and utilities.

  • Companies seeking military experience and discipline, (which publishes an annual list of the top 100 Military Friendly Employers), and other veteran-specific job boards and information sites provide comprehensive lists of military-friendly companies (ranging from transportation, finance, health care, technology, government, retail, security, defense, consumer goods, logistics, insurance, industrial products and services, business services, and more). Here is a short list of Top Military-friendly companies:

  • Leadership & Management

    Your military occupational specialty may be very specific, i.e., accountant, engineer, veterinarian, weapons specialist, chemical/biological/nuclear specialist, pilot, or logistics manager. However, you may also have gained many skills sets complimentary to leadership and management roles within varied military-friendly companies.

    For example, a submariner (Navy) secured a position with Coca-Cola as a Bottling Plant Manager; a comptroller (Army) accepted a position with Frito Lay as Director, Accounting Division; and an infantry soldier accepted a position as an Operations Manager/Warehousing with Wal-Mart. Your leadership skills, discipline, and solid work ethic are very desired by many companies, DoD contractors, and the federal government.

  • Teaching Careers

    The DoD's DANTES: Troops to Teachers provides counseling and referral services to military personnel interested in beginning a second career in public education as a teacher. The DANTES Troops to Teachers office will help applicants identify teacher certification requirements, programs leading to certification, and employment opportunities.

Locating Other Military-Friendly Employers

To identify military-friendly employers, start with general Google searches, Indeed searches, and military association searches.

Keyword Searches

To aid in locating companies who hire veterans, you can conduct keyword searches using any combination of these suggestions:

Department of Defense Contractors / DoD
Cleared Jobs
Law Enforcement
Homeland Security

Any keywords specific to your occupational specialty (engineering, health care, human resources / human capital, operations management, etc.)

[Related: How to Find Jobs Using Google.]

Bottom Line

There is a growing appreciation in the civilian world of the value of military-trained employees and executives. The employers and resources listed above are just a starting point.

About the author...

Job-Hunt's Job Search Expert for Veterans, Diane Hudson Burns is a military transition job-search strategist and career coach. She designs and composes military conversion resumes and helps position service members for employment in corporate or Federal America. Diane holds eight industry credentials including Certified Leadership & Talent Management Coach and Federal Job Search Trainer & Counselor and owns Career Marketing Techniques.


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